I-44 near Big Bend closed this weekend for bridge removal

KIRKWOOD, Mo. — Those who routinely drive on Interstate 44 are in for some big delays starting this weekend. The Missouri Department of Transportation is replacing the Big Bend Bridge in Kirkwood. But, with the repairs, come road closures.

All four lanes going east and west around the bridge are closed until Monday morning at 5:00 a.m.

Starting at 9:00 p.m. Friday, April 8, MoDot will close all four lanes west and east to remove the bridge. All traffic will be diverted to the ramps and will be a “slow-go” until Monday.

“I understand that they have to do it, and they have to make things safer and better. But it’s going to be an inconvenience for a lot of people,” said driver Aimee Moore.

She said she uses the bridge every day to get to work.

“My commute is only five minutes, but it will turn into 15 probably each day,” she said.

MoDOT said the bridge was built in 1967 and is in poor condition. The agency said it’s cheaper to rebuild the bridge than it is to continue to fix the old one.

” I actually take Highway 44 home from work almost every day. I’m at Lutheran Senior Services in Brentwood, and it’s just the most convenient entrance for me,” said Donna Adams.

The project will also impact bus routes. MetroBus said the Big Bend bus stop will be closed. The Kirkwood-Webster route going east and west will be re-routed to go around the bridge.

  • Westbound: Regular routing to Big Bend Blvd. and Sappington Road. Left on Sappington to Watson Rd. Right on Watson Rd. to Kirkwood Rd. Right on Kirkwood Rd. to Big Bend Blvd. Left on Big Bend Blvd. to regular routing.
  • Eastbound: Regular routing to Big Bend Blvd. and Kirkwood Rd. Right on Kirkwood, and then merge onto eastbound I-44. Exit at 27B and then right on Big Bend Blvd. to regular routing.

Drivers said they are up for the shorter-term changes – if it means long-term safety.

“I mean you just have to adjust that’s just life,” Adams said.

One lane each way, as well as the Big Bend Bridge, will remain closed throughout August when work should be finished.

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